Skip to main content

Deadinburgh


Summerhall, Edinburgh
3 stars
How would Scotland's capital city cope if it went into lockdown after an all consuming plague ran amock through the city? How would the survivors react if they were forced to decide on a course of action which may or may not save them? And what if the plague in question was a horde of flesh-eating zombies infected with a killer virus?

All these questions and more are asked in this promenade performance devised by the London-based LAStheatre, who have presented similar perambulations through the Old Vic Tunnels. As the 200-strong audience queue outside the film-set like maze of the former Royal Dick Vet School, they are scrutinised by men in uniform checking for signs of infection. Once inside, a general in command barks out orders while chaos reigns. We will be broken up into six groups, we're told, and led through the building where we'll be introduced to assorted real life scientists who will help us decide what action to take; quarantine the infectees, kill them or else explode the entire city into smithereens.

There's a sense of urgency at play in what is part science lesson, part theme park horror-show, even if sightings of actual zombies are kept to a teasing minimum in Barra Collins' ramblingly atmospheric production. For all the thrills and spills, however, there's actually very little dramatic substance for the thirteen actors to grab hold of. What Deadinburgh needs for it to fully engage is a stronger emotional narrative that goes beyond its generalised box of apocalyptic tricks, and its telling that, of the creatives involved, a writer is absent. Or perhaps that was them being eaten alive in the courtyard.

The Herald, April 22nd 2013

ends

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Peter Brook – The Prisoner

Peter Brook is no stranger to Scotland, ever since the guru of European and world theatre first brought his nine-hour epic, The Mahabharata, to Glasgow in 1988. That was at the city’s old transport museum, which by 1990 had become Tramway, the still-functioning permanent venue that opened up Glasgow and Scotland as a major channel for international theatre in a way that had previously only been on offer at Edinburgh International Festival.
Brook and his Paris-based Theatre des Bouffes du Nord company’s relationship with Tramway saw him bring his productions of La Tragedie de Carmen, La Tempete, Pellease et Mellisande, The Man Who…, and Oh Les Beaux Jours – the French version of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days – to Glasgow.
Thirty years on from The Mahabharata, Brook comes to EIF with another piece of pan-global theatre as part of a residency by Theatre des Bouffes du Nord, which Brook has led since he decamped to Paris from London in the early 1970s. The current Edinburgh residency has alr…

Suzy Glass – Message from the Skies

Freedom of movement matters to Suzy Glass, the arts and events producer currently overseeing the second edition of Message from the Skies.This animated literary derive around the city forms part of this year’s Edinburgh’s Hogmanay programme, and runs right through till Burns’ Night. Glass’ concerns are inherent in the event itself, which has commissioned six writers from different disciplines and experiences to each pen a love letter to Europe. Each writer has then paired up with a composer and visual artist or film-maker, with the results of each collaboration projected in monumental fashion on the walls of one of half a dozen of the capital’s most iconic buildings.
With venues stretching from the south side of Edinburgh to Leith, and with one city centre stop requiring a walk up Calton Hill, there is considerable legwork required to complete the circuit. It shouldn’t be considered a race, however, and audiences are free to move between venues at their leisure, visiting each site on d…

Romeo And Juliet - Shakespeare's Globe Comes to Glasgow

Open-air Shakepeares are a summer-time perennial of the theatre calendar, attracting picnicking audiences as much as midges. More often than not, such romps through the grass are frothy, heritage industry affairs designed to be accompanied by strawberries and cream and not to be taken too seriously. Shakespeare’s Globe theatre company look set to change such perceptions when they open their outdoor tour of Romeo And Juliet in Glasgow next week as part of the West End festival.

For the two young actors taking the title roles of the doomed lovers, it will also be something of a homecoming. Richard Madden and Ellie Piercy both studied in Glasgow prior to turning professional. Indeed, Madden has yet to graduate from the acting course at RSAMD, and, as well as facing the pressures of playing such a meaty role in close proximity to the audience, will have the added anxiety of being assessed and graded by his tutors.

“This is the end of my third year,” says Madden following a Saturday mornin…